Cooperative Planning and Control of Future Combat Systems Resupply Operations: A Component-Based Approach

Award Information
Agency:
Department of Defense
Branch
Army
Amount:
$1,230,000.00
Award Year:
2004
Program:
SBIR
Phase:
Phase II
Contract:
W15QKN-04-C-1022
Agency Tracking Number:
A022-0359
Solicitation Year:
2002
Solicitation Topic Code:
A02-018
Solicitation Number:
2002.2
Small Business Information
ALPHATECH, INC.
6 New England Executive Park, Burlington, MA, 01803
Hubzone Owned:
N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
094841665
Principal Investigator:
Joseph Mola
Lead Software Engineer
(781) 273-3388
joseph.mola@alphatech.com
Business Contact:
John Barry
Contracts Manager
(781) 273-3388
jbarry@alphatech.com
Research Institution:
n/a
Abstract
Army Future Combat Systems (FCS) programs are revolutionizing sustainment concepts to include new inventory management techniques and robotics-enhanced Materials-Handling Equipment (MHE). Building on our Phase I work, we propose to automate key aspects of emerging sustainment tactics, techniques, and procedures. Our approach employs a three-level, hierarchical, component-based software architecture. This architecture exploits recent advances in constraint-based planning and hierarchical control to decouple the interdependent problems of planning, scheduling, routing, and robotic control. The top level uses constraint-based planning techniques to develop rough-cut resupply plans that respect task priorities and meet deadlines. The middle level refines these plans into a global schedule for a group of coordinated assets such as a Forward Support Battalion. The bottom level manages the movement of individual vehicles. We will evaluate the system's generality and efficiency through Army-sponsored integration experiments using real hardware, including ARDEC's Smart Crane test bed. These experiments will apply our system to multi-vehicle resupply scenarios involving combinations of manually operated, semi-autonomous, and fully autonomous MHE, harmonized with FCS's evolving sustainment CONOPS.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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